JD’s 2015 Ballpark Tour; Eastlake, Ohio

Between the Bases

I decided to make a very short post here to keep up with my writing, and to keep this blog active as I continue my travels. This post is about a game I attended prior to the Reds game from my previous post. When I arrived in northeast Ohio, my friend, Mike, wanted me to check out a minor league game at some point. There was one chance to see a game, and since we weren’t leaving until the late morning on 4th of July, we figured… “why not?”

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The ballpark: Classic Park, elevation around 620 feet (elevation of the city)

The game: Lansing Lugnuts @ Lake County Captains on July 3, 2015

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Mike lives about ten minutes from this aptly named classic ballpark. We were able to relax and take it easy getting there. We parked across the street for cheap, crossed the bridge to enter the park, and was met with a fantastic view of the stadium. For a mid-A franchise, this is a fairly nice no-frills stadium. Clearly, this team has a great following because we were met with a huge amount of fans waiting to get tickets.

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Ticket prices are relatively cheap at ten bucks, and this stadium can get packed on a big night. Oh, did I mention this was fireworks night at Lake County? Yes, these fans love their free fireworks shows. In total, there were 7886 fans in attendance, and it felt like it! This was among the biggest crowds I had ever seen at a minor league game, and that got me excited! Yes, there were plenty of loyal fans that obviously followed their home team, but there was also a slew of fans that wanted the fireworks.

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We got our seats in section 105, row K. They were not bad seats at all for $10. The sightlines are good without too many distractions. Before the game, we went to the team shop which they called the “Cargo Hold.” Heh, cute… I really love a good pun. I ended up getting a velcro adjustable cap with the main team logo for only $18. Not a bad price for a minor league team! However, I didn’t want to spend too much money given the other parks I’d be going to later.

Food fare is very typical of any minor league park, albeit somewhat pricey (at least compared to other minor league parks I’ve attended). What sold me on the $4-plus hot dogs were the enthusiastic ushers. I have to give credit to these ushers, they were loud and brought smiles to the faces of everyone around them. I ended up buying two dogs, and they were not bad!

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As for the game, this one went really quick. The Lugnuts scored all of their runs early on some errors, a Boomer Collins triple, and a Ryan McBroom sacrifice fly. Lake County committed three early errors, and that did them in. Lansing was leading 4-0 after four innings, and that’s what the final score ended up being. It’s no secret that the Indians are desperately seeking help in their minor league system. They’ve given up some great talent, and have drafted poorly in recent years. Poor drafting doesn’t help their farm system too much, and that won’t help the Indians further down the road.

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Finally, I have to say that the Captains put on a stellar fireworks show. The crowd ooh’ed and ahh’ed with delight, and even I was impressed. To me, this was just a preview of the fireworks I would be seeing in Cincinnati… and for the rest of my trip! Thank you all for reading, and I’ll see you at the ballpark!

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-JD

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